Don Rush

Assoc. Program Director- Sr. Producer News and Public Affairs

Don Rush is the News Director at Public Radio Delmarva (WSCL/WSDL) in Salisbury, Maryland on the campus of Salisbury University. He has spent the last 35 years in broadcast journalism specializing in national politics. Before coming to Salisbury he spent 12 years in Washington DC with the Pacifica Network News bureau. During the 1980’s he was News Director at KFPK in his home town of Los Angeles. He also worked for the Los Angeles based wire and audio news service CNS/RNW. Locally, he has become an award winning journalist covering everything from development and environmental issues to local politics.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Prosecutors have dropped all charges against a chemist who was arrested in an evidence tampering and theft investigation at Delaware's drug lab.
The Wilmington News Journal reports that court records show a state prosecutor dropped the remaining charges against Farnam Daneshgar - marijuana and paraphernalia possession - earlier this month.

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Sussex County leaders have unveiled their proposed $128.6 million budget for the upcoming year.

That’s increase of 9.6 percent increase over last year largely due to sewer construction projects.

The spending plan does keep the property tax rate steady at 44.5 cent per $100 of assessed value.

The budget does include the phase in of a one-time sewer connection fee along with an $8 increase in sewer rates for current and new customers.

For one district, Long Neck, the hike will be $12.57.


ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved a Maryland request for a disaster declaration to enable people to apply for low-interest loans to repair damage in Baltimore caused by rioting.

Gov. Larry Hogan announced approval of the disaster declaration on Monday.

About 200 small businesses in Baltimore were affected by the unrest after Freddie Gray suffered a fatal spinal injury in police custody.

State and city officials joined SBA staff last week to assess damage in order to apply for the program.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The Delaware state House of Representatives is set to vote on a bill that would make it easier for those with juvenile criminal convictions to have their records expunged.

The bill to be voted on Tuesday modifies discretionary expungement provisions to allow more people, including those with misdemeanors and nonviolent felonies, to be eligible to have their records cleared.

The person could not have adult convictions or pending criminal charges.

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Three people were killed in a single vehicle accident in Worcester County last night.

The Maryland State Police say it occurred around 8:30 p.m. on Route 12 at Onley Road.

WBOC reports that an Acura TL drove off the side of the road while heading northbound on Route 12.

The state troopers report that the car hit several trees before stopping and catching on fire.

It killed the driver 25 year old Nicole Earnest as well as the two passengers 22 year old Amanda Phillips and 45 year old Sean Mobley.

They were all from Chincoteague.

The warm temperatures are coming to the peninsula.

And Wicomico County education officials are reminding parents they can have their children opt out of class at schools that are not fully air conditioned when the temperatures get above 85 degrees.

The facilities affected include Bennett Middle School as well as West Salisbury Elementary and East Salisbury Elementary.

Students must provide a note from the parents or guardian when they return to school.

They will be able to make up the work they missed with an excused absence.

Wicomico County Schools logo

The central offices of Wicomico County Board of Education are on the move.

They will wind up at a new site at Northgate Business Park complex in the northern part of Salisbury.

The board has signed a 20 year lease for $253-thousand a year.

Currently, the board has a number of portable offices next to its office building with around 150 board employees.

The move follows an effort by Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver to move the offices to the old Bennett Middle School structure.

It was rejected by the County Council.

In Smyrna if you want to upgrade the front of your home or business there could be some financial help.

The town’s Redevelopment Authority is providing assistance to property owners within the city limits with money from the Façade Improvement Grants program.

WBOC reports that the funding would go towards such things as doors, roofs, shutters and walkways.

The grants could cover as much as 25 percent of the cost up to $25-hundred.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell's lawyers get a half-hour to urge a federal appeals court to overturn his public corruption convictions.

Prosecutors get equal time to argue that a jury got it right when it found McDonnell guilty of 11 counts last September.

A three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear the arguments Tuesday morning in Richmond. The court usually takes a few weeks to rule.

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There’s a new study that finds harmful algae blooms in the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries have been increasing dramatically over the last 20 years.

This is in addition to the seasonal algae blooms that occur when the weather warms up in the spring and the summer.

One strain Prorocentrum minimum was found to have doubled during the period running from 1991 through 2008 while another cyanobacteria in the tidal waters rose from 13 percent per year 23 percent during the 1990’s.

53 year-old Robert Tamargo has been identified as the GE worker who was electrocuted at the Eastern Correctional Institution last Thursday.

He was a field service engineer who was at the prison’s co-generation power plant when the accident occurred.

It’s now being investigated by the Maryland Occupational Safety and Health agency.

He was with five other GE employees at the facility.

No one else was injured.

There was little interruption of service to the prison in Westover.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - Newly released records show that thousands of people have been brought to the Baltimore city jail in recent years with injuries too severe for them to be admitted.

The Baltimore Sun obtained records showing that correctional officers at the jail refused to admit nearly 2,600 detainees who were in police custody between June 2012 and April 2015.

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OCEAN CITY, Md. (AP) - New regulations are going into effect in Maryland and Delaware for a reduction in fishing for striped bass.

The two states have taken different approaches to recommendations for the fishing reduction.

Maryland is changing regulations for inland fishing and on the coast. Last year, anglers could catch two striped bass per day per person. This year they can only catch one per day.

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Seven members of Delaware’s medical relief team have arrived in Nepal.

They will be delivering medical supplies and treating patients as the country attempts to emerge from the devastating earthquake that has left more than 79-hundred dead.

Another 17-thousand were injured when two weeks ago the quake hit the mountainous region.

The Wilmington news Journal reports that as many as 800-thousand are without homes.

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - A historic Wilmington church is officially becoming part of Delaware's new National Historical Park.

U.S. Sen. Tom Carper planned to join the Rev. Patricia Downing on Monday for the signing of a cooperative easement agreement adding Old Swedes Church to the park.

The church is the oldest in the country standing as originally built and still used for worship. It was built in the late 1690s by descendants of Swedish colonists who crossed the Atlantic aboard the Kalmar Nyckel in 1638.

New Castle County Police

There was another march over the death of a young man.

This time it was in Middletown where around 300 people were called on police to find justice in the death of 20-year old Ty Sawyer.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the suspect in question is Patrick Downey who fought with Sawyer.

The paper says the police have not identified Downey but has been told they are trying to figure out if charges are warranted.


INDIAN HEAD, Md. (AP) - A Maryland town will swear in the youngest mayor in the state's history Tuesday.

Multiple news outlets report 19-year-old Brandon Paulin will become mayor of Indian Head, a town of about 4,000 residents on the Potomac River Tuesday. Paulin is a political science major at the College of Southern Maryland. During the election on May 5, he was up against the town's current mayor and vice mayor. Paulin won with 239 of the 383 votes cast. 

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MILFORD, Del. (AP) - Fire officials say one person was killed and five others were injured in a house fire in a rural area north of Milford.

Assistant State Fire Marshal Michael Chionchio says the injured included an elderly man who suffered severe burns.

The fire was reported around 10:30 a.m. on Sunday. Firefighters arrived to find heavy flames in the mobile home with additions. Chionchio says the body of one resident was found as firefighters searched the home after extinguishing the flames.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - In the eight months since former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell was convicted of public corruption, a few developments have gone his way.

The federal appeals court that will hear arguments Tuesday in McDonnell's case allowed the ex-governor and his wife, Maureen, to remain free on bond while they challenge their convictions. Legal experts say that decision suggests the court believes at least some of the issues raised on appeal are a close call.

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The Somerset County Planning and Zoning Commission indicated yesterday it may be included to toughening up the regulations on chicken houses.

Commissioner Robert Fitzgerald said that this was not just a Somerset County problem but an industry problem.

Supporters of tighter regulations wore stickers at the public hearing that said “Factory Farms make me sick,” while opponents had their own which read, ”If you eat food, thank a farmer.”

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the commissioners indicated they would consider making large projects get their approval.

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We are a awash in the age of social media, electronic connections that often overwhelm those of us who grew up in the simple age of television.

Delmarva Public Radio's Essayist George Merrill writes that his friends may all die before he can get out his first text.

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It's known as Shark Tank, the television show on ABC that offers up a chance to would be entrepreneurs to make their pitch.

The program's casting call has come to Salisbury for a second time and will be hearing product ideas on Saturday at the Perdue School of Business on the campus of Salisbury University. Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush spoke with the show's casting director Scott Salyer about what it takes to make a good pitch. 

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WASHINGTON (AP) - Attorney General Loretta Lynch has announced a Justice Department investigation into the Baltimore police department.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Democratic Gov. Jack Markell has come out in support of an effort to repeal Delaware's death penalty.

Markell said Thursday that if a bill to abolish capital punishment reaches his desk, he would sign it.

In recent years, Markell has refused to say where he stands on the issue.

But Markell said the recent acknowledgment by the FBI that examiners in its microscopic hair comparison unit gave flawed testimony in more than 250 criminal cases, including death penalty cases, before 2000, helped him reach a decision.

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A police dashcam video shows a black suspect being kicked in the face by a white Dover police officer who was charged this week with assault.

The video released Thursday by police is part of a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union over the August 2013 incident.

The video shows Cpl. Thomas Webster IV, who was responding to a disturbance at a gas station, kicking Lateef Dickerson. Dickerson, responding to commands to get on the ground, is on his hands and knees.

Accomack County Schools Website

There are more details emerging about the threats that led to the lockdown of the Accomack County Administration Building at 4 p.m. yesterday.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the offices on the second floor were locked down after several threatening calls were received that included profane language.

Accomack County School Superintendent Kregg Cuellar, whose board has offices on that floor, said that the Sheriff’s Office was immediately contacted as the building was put on lockdown.

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Virginia Beach's hotel association has voiced its disapproval of offshore drilling.

The Virginian Pilot reports Virginia Beach hoteliers are against exploring for oil and natural gas off the city's beaches.

Earlier this year, the Obama administration announced a plan to allow drilling in federal waters in an undetermined area somewhere off Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. The site would be at least 50 miles offshore, according to the proposal.

Preakness Website

BALTIMORE (AP) - The general manager of the Maryland Jockey Club anticipates a record crowd at the Preakness next Saturday, despite recent unrest and rioting in Baltimore.

Salvatore Sinatra says, "Sales have been very strong. Hopefully the weather holds, and we will probably break a record."

Baltimore was engulfed in violence last week amid protests over the death of Freddie Gray, a black man who died from injuries he received while in police custody.

As a result, security at Pimlico Race Course has been "beefed up," according to Sinatra.

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The Delaware state House of Representatives has given its blessing to a measure that would allow parents to opt out of standardized testing without their children suffering any disciplinary or academic consequences.

The vote was 36 to 3 with two lawmakers absent.    

Governor Jack Markell has said that he opposes the legislation.

Fellow Democrat Representative John Kowalko who sponsored the bill said that this was not meant as any criticism of the governor’s record on education.


ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley has hired a former aide to President Barack Obama to be his national political director, as he prepares to announce a decision about running for president.

O'Malley spokeswoman Lis Smith confirmed Thursday the hiring of Karine Jean-Pierre.